Posted in kdrama

Once Again (2019-2020)

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Drama: Once Again (한 번 다녀왔습니다)
Network: KBS2
Episodes: 100
Release Date: March 28 – September 13, 2020
Runtime: Saturday & Sunday 19:55
Language: Korean
Country: South Korea

Plot
Four adult children of a married couple got divorced and went back to live with their parents.

Main Cast
Lee Min Jung – Song Nahee
Lee Sang Yeob – Yoon Gyu Jin
Lee Cho Hee – Song Dahee
Lee Sang Yi – Yoon Jae Seok
Oh Yoon Ah – Song Gahee
Ki Do Hoon – Park Hyosin
Oh Dae Hwan – Song Junseon
Lim Jung Eun – Sung Hyun Kyung
Cheon Hojin – Song Yeong Dal
Cha Hwa Yeon – Jang Ok Bun
Kim Bo Yeon – Choi Yoon Jong
Lee Jung Eun – Cho Yeon / Yeong Suk
Baek Ji Won – Jang Ok Ja
Ahn Kil Kang – Yang Chisu

Review:
What a wonderful story! I’ve watched a few weekend dramas before and this is one of those that didn’t have a lot of makjang storylines! It was just about a family where each member has their own struggles in life, they fight, they misunderstand, they hurt each other. But in the end, they are family and they continue to understand and love each other.

I love the siblings – Junseon, Gahee, Nahee and Dahee! Gyujin and Jaesook too! If i had to choose:

Dahee and Jaesook is my favorite couple. Not only do the actors look alike, they just have this sweet vibe and they match perfectly. I love Nahee and Gyujin but they keep fighting like kids, sometimes I wonder how they manage to stay together. Or maybe it’s really just opposite attract.

Jaesook is the best boyfriend. He supports Dahee 100%, he is very sweet, understanding and romantic. He sings for her!! Brings her food. Meets her after work. Hangs out with her friends. His only flaw is that he is a little bit clingy (well, I think some girls like clingy guys).

Gahee is my favorite sibling. She looks so good in everything she wears. She is a cool mom, she stands up for herself and she is smart. She is caring and sensitive too. No wonder Hyosin fell in love with her despite the age gap, her divorce status and having a child.

Choyeon/Yeongsuk is my favorite ahjumma/market owner. She is smart and tough because of her upbringing. She defends the people who are down, she helps older people. Her flaw is being too nice that she takes care of other people even when they have betrayed her. She is simple and average looking but because of her personality, two guys fell in love with here in the drama, and she eventually dates a much younger and handsome guy! Not bad Choyeon!

Dahee is the best daughter in law, the best daughter, the best sister. She is the sweetest of them all. She may look like a pushover but once she sets her mind to it, she is stubborn. Maybe because she’s the youngest so she gets babied a lot but she knows when it’s time to remind the people that she can make her own decisions. She is nice to everyone, that’s why she can even tame the strictest and scariest mother in law (yes, that’s Yoonjung!)

Jihoon is the sweetest grandchild. He was hurt when his dad kept ignoring him. I felt so bad whenever he gets stood up by his dad. I’m glad he was able to meet and be friends with Hyosin. He needed a stand up adult to mentor him or else I’m sure he would have grown up to be a bad child. Kudos to Gahee for raising a young and mature son. Even at a young age, he is sensitive to his mom’s feelings and when dad wanted to get back together with Gahee, he said no and chose to be happy with his mom. Plus, he also encouraged Hyosin and Gahee.

Rating: 8.5/10

Posted in kdrama

Scripting Your Destiny (2021)

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Drama: Scripting Your Destiny (당신의 운명을 쓰고 있습니다)
Network: TVING
Episodes: 10
Release Date: March 26, 2021
Runtime: Friday 16:00
Language: Korean
Country: South Korea

Plot
A diety of destiny falls in love with a human.

Main Cast
Ki Do Hoon – Shin Ha Yoon
Jeon So Nee – Go Chae Kyung
Park Sang Nam – Myung
Kim Woo Seok – Jung Bareum
Kal So Won – Sam Shin
So Hee Jung – Mi Soon

Review:
This is a short web drama (10 eps at 25mins each) so the story is fast paced. We don’t get the full setup of the characters or the god of diety rules but enough to understand the story. The plot is interesting, actually I feel like the material is good enough for a full fledged drama. However, because the story is so short, there is not much time for the viewers to really think of the main theme of the story or how it really translated in the execution of the story. I honestly wasn’t sure how I feel about the destiny written by god should be followed versus this is your life, you make your own choices (aka free will).

I mean, I love Hayoon and Chae Kyung. Somehow they’re destined to be with each other, that’s why they keep meeting so many times. But who wrote it so as Chae Kyung will be destined to be with Hayoon (was it Myung who was in-charge in writing Chae Kyung’s life)? But why would you do that knowing full well that Hayoon is a god and you can’t pair a god with a human because as soon as the god feels human emotions, he disappears? It’s just so cruel, not just to Hayoon but also to Chae Kyung who will have to suffer that same fate and most likely stay forever alone in her lifetime.

The ending wasn’t satisfying. *Spoilers ahead*

I thought it could have ended at ep 9 and I would be happy. Because that’s what we were made to understand. That as soon as Hayoon feels emotions, he will disappear, and dieties are only given 3 chances then they disappear forever. If that’s the case, what the heck happened in episode 10??? Hayoon is back with no memory of Chae Kyung, he is now Myung, leading the newbie dieties. He ends up meeting her again (Chae Kyung wished for it) it was weird, like we’re back to square 1. Are they going to repeat the cycle forever? See how awful that is? Hayoon even said I may not remember you but I hope she never forgets him! So selfish!!!

They also sometimes bend the rules of diety elimination to suit the story. There was one diety who disappeared as soon as he defended a human but it took some time for Hayoon to disappear. He even kissed Chaekyung, they hugged etc and he was able to say goodbye to her. Plus, why does Hayoon get to be back on earth as a diety while Myung disappears because he altered the will of life? And Sam shin went to school to meet with the cutie student, why is she still on earth?

Lastly, why do they have to make Chaekyung wear ugly curly hair?? It doesn’t even impact the story or her character other than make her look different from high school.

Rating: 8/10 (8.5 upto episode 9 minus 0.5 for the terrible ending)


Posted in jdrama

This Guy is the Biggest Mistake in My Life (2020)

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Drama: This Guy is the Biggest Mistake in My Life (この男は人生最大の過ちです)
Network: TV Asahi, ABC
Episodes: 10
Release Date: January 18 – March 21, 2020 (TV Asahi) / January 19 – March 22, 2020 (ABC)
Runtime: Saturday 26:30 (TV Asahi) / Sunday 23:35 (ABC)
Country: Japan

Plot:
Sato was mourning the loss of her dog Chocolate when a guy hit on her in a bar. She gets angry and scolds him. He was shocked and immediately fell in love with her. The next day, he turns out to be his boss and calls him into her office. He tells her to treat her like her slave and follows her everywhere.

Main Cast
Mokomichi Hayami – Kyoichi Amagi
Airi Matsui – Yui Sato
Michiko Tanaka – Sae Mishima
Jingi Irie – So Natori
Yuta Hiraoka – Koshiro Aida

Review:
I really liked the first 5 episodes (or up until their trip to the ryokan.) The drama was laugh out loud funny and light. But the second half felt different, with the addition of Sae and Aida and got a little boring.

This is a manga adaptation so i threw all logic and real life out of the window. The guy is creepy and stalkerish but he sounds sincere and seems to really like Sato. He just needed to tone down his obsessive ways or learn to control himself and listen to Sato. Moco was so good at portraying Amagi. He never got angry or raised his voice. He loved her for who she was, gave her everything she wanted and more. I think if he actually stopped stalking her and treated her properly, Sato would have fallen head over heels for him too. I know it’s wrong, but I laughed every time Amagi holds on to and smells her ankles. And that episode where he brought a whole feast to her office so she can have dinner. The food spelled out her name and the dessert was a cake with her face. ROTFL!!!

I wasn’t really sure how Sato really felt which was disappointing because the show kept emphasizing that people need to be honest with their own feelings. Half of the time, it felt like Sato liked him back but just got creeped out of his behavior, sometimes it felt like she was pitying him, then she would burst and slam him to the floor. “Stop following me!” But she kept joining him for dinner, talking to him, cared for him. When Sato though Amagi died, she laid out her honest feelings to Amagi but when he woke up, she denied it and beat him up again. Between the two, I actually felt bad for Amagi and wished he wises up and leave Sato to find another nicer woman.

Good thing this drama was short. 10 episodes at 20 mins (or less) per episode. So this was a breezy watch. There’s not much character growth though and nothing really happened story-wise. The guy just kept pursuing Sato. Sato will feel bad, think that maybe she likes him, then will beat up Amagi And stalk off. Amagi gets turned on and continue to pursue her. Repeat 10x.

I didn’t like Sae. I thought she was an unnecessary nuisance to the story – meant to make Sato feel jealous. And she didn’t. or so I think. It felt like she was jealous or is it more like being possessive because Amagi’s affections are not centered on her?? (But she still won’t accept his feelings).

A part of me thinks she should have just chosen Aida then Amagi will stop chasing her. (But Aida is also a little bit weird).

I didn’t expect the ending (is that it???). I thought the time alone would have made Sato realize that she likes Amagi but when Amagi showed up and gave her the curative medicine, she just got angry again and beat him up. I saw the medicine and thought “Awwww. he really likes her!!” It was the sweetest proposal I’ve seen. Can’t she appreciate his efforts even if she turns down his affections?

Another laugh out loud moment was the realization that Amagi was in every picture of her trip. It was so dang hilarious!!!

Do I want a season 2? Not really.

Rating: 7/10

Posted in kdrama

Love Alarm S2 (2021)

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Drama: Love Alarm Season 2 (좋아하면 울리는 시즌 2)
Network: Netflix
Episodes: 6
Release Date: March 12, 2021

Plot:

Main Cast:
Kim So Hyun – Kim Jojo
Song Kang – Hwang Sun-oh
Jung Garam – Lee Hyeyoung
Go Minsi – Park Gulmi
Kim Si Eun – Yukjo
Ki Do Hoon – Brian Chon

Review:
Link to my Season 1 review: https://kdramadreaming.com/2019/12/21/love-alarm-s1-2019/


I really wanted Jojo to be with Sunoh in S1 but after watching S2 eps 1-4, I actually felt relieved that Jojo chose Hyeyoung and Sunoh had the closure he wanted (and free from toxic Jojo!! Yehey!!).

There are Different Kinds of Love
I think Jojo made the right choice to choose Hyeyoung. They are both boring and simple (which is not bad) and they worked well as a couple. I felt like that Sunoh was made to look pathetic, stalking Jojo like Hyeyoung did in S1 so I really felt bad for Sunoh and thought he deserved so much better than that. And I felt it was unfair that Jojo never gave him the same chance she gave Hyeyoung.

That shield. It was because of me. To hide your feelings for me. You installed in as you pleased, and hid it as you pleased. You didn’t even give me time to prepare. Look into your heart properly now. I won’t let you go now without understanding why.”

episode 4, Sunoh confronting Jojo

Love is Timing
The story didn’t start from the end of S1 where they all met at the conference, so it felt like a huge chunk of time went by and we didn’t know what happened in between. Suddenly Jojo and Hyeyoung were a couple (bf/gf) and not just “dating”. I mean, Sunoh didn’t have a fighting chance since Hyeyoung has been there for Jojo for so many years and at Jojo’s point where she was ready to let go of the past and move forward. Sunoh’s time has passed.

Did you ever regret installing the shield?

I regretted it every second. But still I think I’d install it again. I learned a lot through that choice. So even if I were to go back in time, I’d install the shield again, regret it again and be hurt again. I’m sorry.

episode 6, Jojo finally apologizing to Sunoh and getting closure

Passionate Love vs Steady Love
From Ep 1-4, it felt like Jojo was forcing herself to love Hyeyoung out of pity. And everyone was so obsessed with ringing each other’s alarm. Jojo eventually fell in love with a nice guy like Hyeyoung. It may not have been the passionate love at first sight kind of love that she experienced with Sunoh, but it’s also a valid and very real kind of love.

When you came to my school, all I could think about was Hyeyoung. Even when that video went viral, the old me would have only thought of running away. But back then, I could only think about how hurt Hyeyoung must be and I knew I had to go to him. That was all I could think about.

episode 4, Jojo finally showing her true feelings

You Can’t Force a Person to Fall In Love With You
On the other hand, I felt bad for Yukjo. Unlike Hyeyoung, she didn’t “get” the guy she wanted. This drama showed that Jojo slowly fell in love with Hyeyoung through his consistent efforts but it may not always work for everyone. Yukjo is such a nice girl and girlfriend, yet despite her efforts, Sunoh still didn’t love her. I did like the open ending where Sunoh told Yukjo that he will make effort too until he rings her bell. Again, it goes back to having the free will and decision to love a person and not putting so much attention on an app.

I actually liked Gulmi here. She probably had the most character growth (although she didn’t really change that much). Lol I didn’t make sense.

The morale of the story didnt really had an impact to me because even though they talked about timing and volition, their actions didnt match the lesson.

Rating: 6/10

Posted in kdrama

True Beauty (2021)

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Drama: True Beauty (여신강림)
Network: tvN
Episodes: 16
Release Date: December 9, 2020 – February 4, 2021
Runtime: Wed. & Thu. 22:30

Plot:
A high school girl bullied for her looks learns how to use makeup and transfers to another school where students are nice to her. She gets caught in a love triangle between silent but strong Suho and cool guy Seo Jun. Who will she choose? And what will she do when everyone finds out her real face sans makeup?

Main Cast
Moon Ga Young – Lim Jukyung
Cha Eun Woo – Lee Suho
Hwang In Yeop – Han Seo Jun
Park Yoona – Kang Soo Jin

Review
The best thing about this drama is of course Jukyung and Suho 🥰 I think even without the childhood connection they could have still worked the relationship. I love that Suho loved Jukyung for herself and Jukyung helped Suho come out of his shell. They were there for each other in good and bad times and they didn’t have to pretend to each other. they can just show their true selves – like how they both love horror comics.

Cha Eun Woo as Lee Suho is perfect!! I think his stint in All the Butlers is helping me grow and mature into a better actor. He’s getting exposed to different challenges and experiences and meeting various people. Plus i’m sure he is getting tips from his fellow cast mates Seunggi and Seungrok. He’s only 23 years old – I think give him a few more years and we will see an even better actor

Poor Seojun, he really is a good guy, but just not the right one for Jukyung. I was hoping for a cameo of someone pretty at the end so that Seojun will have his own happy ever atfer but i liked that he was able to debut! I know a lot of people loved Hwang In Yeop in True Beauty, but I honestly liked him more in 18 Again.

It’s hard for me to watch the bullying scenes but I love that Jukyung was able to stand up and accept herself with or without makeup. And I’m glad she found real friends like Soo Ah. School violence and bullying must really be prevalent in Korea. Is it because of the pressure that the kids face from society and their parents? I really hope they do something about it.

Jukyung’s family is weird but fun! I love the softhearted dad and the cute younger brother. The mom is a tiger mom and at first I didn’t like her for always not listening to Jukyung and putting her down because she is not “pretty” enough. Good thing she finally learned the truth and supported Jukyung. One thing I find weird is that the first thing that she thought of was to go to a plastic surgeon. I mean, she saw how pretty Jukyung can be in full makeup — she just needs a good dermatologist to help her with her skin care.

I loved the bromance between Suho, Seojun and Seyeon. Not just loved, but it was heartbreaking. I feel so sad that Seyeon killed himself after the false bullying accusations. That is why everyone and especially the media needs to be careful with what we post and write. it’s not always about the power, fame and money. We need to love and respect more.

I loved all the cameos from Extra You cast.. but why is Kim Young Dae’s cameo so short? (Maybe he was busy filming Penthouse). I love Gun Joo’s cameo is the longest. He is so cute!

The makeup PPL and the OST! I almost added to cart all the colorgram cosmetics in Lazada last weekend 😁 but restrained myself. But i bought the OST! the background music was a little distracting though because it was always loud.

The story was almost finished by episode 14 so I didn’t expect the time jump. The last two episodes felt like fillers, although they were able to wrap everyone’s story neatly. It did feel like it was more of appreciation episodes for Seo Jun as he got a lot of screen time.. he had a date with Jukyung and confessed his feelings, he still maintained his friendship with Suho and he debuted and sang twice.

I appreciated seeing the gang all grown up and living their lives after school. I didn’t necessarily hate the breakup, I thought it was the most sensible reason at that time. Suho didn’t know when he will be back and he didn’t want Jukyung to wait for him. I hoped instead of Suho breaking up with Jukyung like that, and going silent for 2 years, they could have mutually agreed to hold off the relationship until he was back. I think Jukyung would have understood it.

I missed Soojin and I was hoping she had a better ending than volunteering overseas. It felt like she was trying hard to atone for her past behavior. She can go back to school, do what she wants and be her badass self again.

I’m prolly the only one who didn’t like Hee Kyung and Mr Han’s romance. I mostly fast forwarded their scenes. I think it was too cute for their age, but it wasn’t bad.

I did wish to see more reconciliation scenes between Suho and dad.

Rating: 9/10 (8.5 for the story +0.5 for Eunwoo)